My name is Jackson and I live in Greenwich, Connecticut. I have been studying Mandarin for quite a while now although I have only just finished my freshman year of high school. I took interest in the language from a young age. I started studying the language when I was seven. I had one hour tutoring sessions once a week, and learned most of the basics. I knew clothes, colors, numbers, and places, and that made up the extent of my Chinese knowledge until 6th grade. I switched schools in middle school and began to take Mandarin classes. For three years I studied with the same five classmates and teacher, learning of plethora of new characters and rapidly progressing. Unfortunately for me, I switched schools once again just this year. Although the school I currently attend has great academics, among other things, it lacks in the language department. Even the upper levels were to basic compared to what I had learned in middle school. However, when I came across the dragons program I was delighted to find a way to keep up and really improve my Mandarin while also immersing myself in the culture.
Besides studying Mandarin, I spend a large portion of my free time studying the piano and playing water polo. I began learning the piano when I was 4 years old, so I have been playing it for 11 years. Classically trained, I began performing and competing in competitions shortly after I began to show promise in the art. As a result of this, a huge part of my life has been dedicated to music. I’ve spent a tremendous amounts of hours practicing the piano and have developed a great passion for it. As a matter of fact, the pianist I look up to the most if Lang Lang, a native of China. Other than piano I spent a lot of my time dedicated to water polo. I must say it is an odd sport. It is super fun yet it is also very hard. Many hours of my day are spent both being yelled at by my crazy Romanian coach and swimming a relentless amount of laps all to train for the Junior Olympics. As of last year my team was ranked 7th in the nations and I unfortunately won’t be attending this year on account of this amazing opportunity to go to China. In school I also am a member of two clubs. I am apart of the Model United Nations club and have gone to many conferences and really enjoy the experience. I also attend the finance club where we discuss different aspects of finance and have weekly visits to our local boys and girls club to educate them in the field.
Can’t wait to meet all of you!